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Use drugs correctly for peace of mind and to stay heathy and safe all year

With the Chinese New Year continuous holiday approaching, The Department of Health, Taipei City Government reminds everyone to pay attention to using drugs safely when you go to your hometown to visit relatives or go out to give festive greetings to stay healthy. DOH provides tips for safe drugs use so that you start the new year safe and healthy:
Uninterrupted health:

  • Prepare sufficient amount of drugs for a worry free holiday: check the expiry date of your drugs before the holiday and prepare a sufficient amount to avoid running out during the long holiday when hospitals and clinics are closed.
  • Take drugs on time without interruption: you should maintain a regular lifestyle during the seven-day holiday, don’t take a break from taking your drugs; people who have regularly taken drugs for a long time should continue to take them on time to maintain the best health state.
  • Carry emergency drugs at all times: cardiovascular and asthma drugs should be prepared as needed and carried at all times (such as nitroglycerin sublingual tablets and inhaled bronchodilator); more preparation, less worry.
Things to pay attention about drugs to when travelling:
  • People with a chronic illness prescription planning to take a long trip during the Chinese New Year holiday can have the prescription filled in advance according to government regulations to avoid interruption of their regular drug taking.
  • When traveling, be sure not to treat drugs or medicinal herbs (materials) as ordinary products and take them and buy to give friends and relatives to avoid causing damage to health through not knowing correct usage, points for attention and side effect.
  • If bringing in drugs or Chinese medicinal herbs into Taiwan, the regulations of the Table of Limits for Carrying of Self-use Drugs by Arrivals of the Food and Drug Administration, Ministry of Health and Welfare should be followed (website path: https://www.fda.gov.tw). Drugs, Chinese medicinal herbs or materials that are carried can only be for self-use and cannot be sold and cannot be sold online; if they are sold the regulations of the Pharmaceutical Affairs Law will be violated.
  • Drugs for treating colds, runny nose and allergy often contain Antihistamine and can often produce drowsiness after being taken; people taking such drugs should avoid driving for long distances. As most cold syrups contain glucose syrup, diabetics should use with care.
Be cautious of medicinal wine at gatherings:
  • Medicinal wine is a drug not wine. Don’t drink medicinal wine when you don’t know where it comes from.
  • When getting together with friends and relatives over Chinese New Year, you might stay up late, affecting immunity, or eat and drink too much, causing stomach discomfort. We remind you, to use an over the counter drug, you can go to a community chemist and take it under their guidance; if your condition is serious you should seek medical attention as quickly as possible.
  • Sufferers of chronic illnesses shouldn’t drink too much to avoid causing cerebrovascular disease (such as stroke,) incidence of heart disease through excessive alcohol intake or discomfort or even danger to life due to the interaction between drugs.
  • Be vigilant with regards to drug advertisements that make false claims and drugs sold online the source of which is unclear; remember the five principles: don’t listen to others when they recommend drugs, don’t trust drugs that claim magical effects, don’t take drugs other give you, don’t recommend drugs to others, don’t buy drugs sold by hawkers, in night markets and on tour buses. If you buy drugs or medical devices, it is suggested you go to a physical channel such as a licensed pharmacist. When taking drugs, remember five questions: before taking ask What is this drug? What effect does it have? How is it taken? How long is it taken? What things need to be paid attention to? If you don’t know about a drug or have doubts, be sure to ask a doctor or pharmacist.
The Department of Health, Taipei City Government, calls on everyone to use drugs correctly, exercise regularly and eat healthily during the Chinese New Year period to start the new year in a healthy way. DOH wishes you happy new year and a safe start to the Year of the Ox.